Honorable John Laettner — Department 25

Biographical Information

  • Education: B.A. UC San Diego, Political Science: J.D. Hastings College of Law
  • Pre-bench Legal Experience: Civil litigator, Deputy District Attorney, Assistant U.S. Attorney Chief U.S. Attorney’s office in Oakland


Judicial Experience

Appointed March 2006. Criminal courts, felony law and motion judge, specialty courts, felony trial judge, and juvenile court


Pre-bench Civic & Professional Activities

Coached baseball and basketball for many years. High school moot court program.


Current Civic & Professional Activities

Inns of Court, law school moot court judge.


Continuing Legal Education Faculty

MCLE instructor on law and motion practice for criminal law.


Important published decision(s)

People v. Gutierrez – Established law that district attorney to provide Brady by preliminary examination.


Typical weekly schedule

Currently handling long-cause juvenile trials, W&I proceedings, SARB calendar and Civil and Criminal Grant Jury Supervising Judge.


Courtroom Policies

Generally rules from the bench.



Professional demeanor, attire.



Follow Rules of Court.



Follow Rules of Court.



Follow PC 1054.



Follow Rules of Court.


In Limine Motions

Can be filed day of trial.


Voir Dire

For cause issues only.


Jury Instructions

Parties to provide requested instructions. Use CalCrim.



Have witnesses ready.



Rarely imposed.



Have Exhibits pre-marked.



Professional and courteous at all times.


Court Reporters & Translators

Slow down for both.


Computers in the Courtroom






Cameras in the Courtroom

Court does not allow. For news group, accommodations may be made for still shots at beginning of proceeding but this is very limited.



Be prepared. Be courteous. Be straight with the court. Stay honest.